CAUGHT UP! Whew! Now I can go another six months before posting any more pictures.
CAUGHT UP! Whew! Now I can go another six months before posting any more pictures.
It’s a whole new year! (Yes, I know that was three months ago.) It’s a whole new year of Jack!
Who needs words? We have Jack.
November is not usually my favorite month, but look at how cute Jack was then!
I think this month included some of the best pictures I’ve ever taken of Jack. Then again, except for when he moves (ahem, ALWAYS), it’s hard to take a bad picture of the cutest baby who ever lived.
Join me in my time machine as we revisit September 26, 2019 and September 28, 2019. I’ve left out the large amount of blurry pictures, and sadly for the rest of us, those were pretty busy days and I didn’t take as many pictures as I should have.
Here’s what Jack looked like six-ish months ago, in September.
Last August, I was hot and swollen and uncomfortable. This August made up for it.
He just keeps getting cuter.
Our grocery cart/high chair cover came weeks ago, and I FINALLY tried it out at the store with Jack the other day. He did great. I still have to work on getting it in place quickly and with one hand. For this outing, I put the car seat in the cart, got the cover on, moved Jack into the seat, and then piled groceries on top of the car seat.
Plenty adorable, right? It got so much better. I turned back to the cart after picking up milk, and found this:
Poor sad baby chicken. Not quite 9 months old and already completely done with grocery shopping.
Jack in May!
You guys are overdue for some cute baby pictures, and boy, do I have some good ones for you. Let’s start with April.
Wait, there’s more?
I mean, objectively, isn’t Jack the cutest baby in the world?
We think Jack may have a sensitivity to milk, so I eliminated dairy from my diet 11 days ago. (I meant to start 13 days ago, but I kept forgetting and doing stupid things like eating ice cream that first day and chicken corn chowder (heavy on cream and cheese) the second day.) I THINK we’re seeing an improvement in Jack, but it’s hard to tell – is it really better? Did I screw up again mid-week? (Yes.) Is it possible that it’s just his immature digestive system acting up and it seems better now because he’s growing? I have no idea. Also, I’ve done my googling (naturally), and if he is sensitive to milk, it’s pretty mild and thank goodness for that. A serious sensitivity would be much more unpleasant for him.
Anyway, being dairy-free SUCKS and that’s with me only eliminating the obvious stuff – no milk, no butter, no cheese, no sour cream. Ugh, no cream cheese. I’m not going full vegan and avoiding baked goods or fully cooked things that might have had dairy in them. I did miss having tea and cereal, so I’m trying almond milk. It’s….okay. I do NOT recommend drinking it straight. I tried it with chocolate cake – that’s a big no. (The cake is a big yes.) But in cereal, it’s great. I pretty much couldn’t tell it wasn’t regular milk with either Frosted Flakes or Honey Nut Cheerios. In tea, the jury is still out. This is my second try with Yorkshire tea, and I’m not wild about it, but I used it in French Vanilla tea yesterday, and it was great.
What I really want is to go back to my normal diet, but I’m not sure how to approach that. If Jack were to show no improvement, then yay I can eat what I want, but the poor baby is still in distress. If Jack shows improvement, then either he’s sensitive to dairy and I should stay off it for at least a few months or dairy has nothing to do with it and he’s just maturing. I have no way to tell without testing by introducing dairy again, which might make Jack very uncomfortable again.
Yeah, yeah, the responsible thing to do is continue to avoid dairy. Boo responsibility.
Now, to thank you all for your patience, here is a picture of Jack from when he was one week old.
I have many many many more pictures, and now that I have solved (John has solved) my picture problem, I will be uploading more. I just don’t have them on my computer yet. Jack is sleeping and my phone is providing white noise, so I don’t want to take it away to get the pictures.
Let me tell you the story of our hike last Saturday. “Story”, since it’s not like anything eventful happened. Mostly I want an excuse to show you pictures. Oh, that reminds me – I want to preface all these pictures with something. Every picture and video posted here was taken by me on my phone’s camera. I have the resolution cranked all the way up, and for the still photos, I have HDR turned on. I don’t edit my photos, and I don’t use filters. (This is not a vanity or ego thing – I don’t have the patience or desire to spend that much time on my pictures.)
Anyway, I wanted a hike with waterfalls, but I didn’t want to drive all the way across the state to see the famous ones, like Multnomah Falls (two and a half hours away) or Klamath Falls (three hours away). Luckily for us, the Mackenzie River has a trail called the Waterfalls Loop Trail, and it starts less than 90 away from us.
We started at the Carmen Reservoir. The day was perfect.
The river was so clear it looked it looked chlorinated, and the water was so cold that the air on the banks felt like air conditioning. Everything smelled fresh and clean and clear and that reminds me of something I forgot to mention about our redwoods hike. That national park smelled SO GOOD. Margaret, wonder that she is, explained that the park has a lot of bay trees, and surprise surprise, they smell like bay leaves, and it was so freakin’ pleasant (and I am so glad we had Margaret to tell us that because otherwise I would not have been able to explain why it smelled so good). This forest did not smell like bay leaves, but it smelled like fresh, clean air, and it was so nice.
The path was clear and well-maintained (and by the waterfalls, it had big log railings that reminded John of Busch Gardens in Williamsburg), and the forest was beautiful.
And then we rounded the corner and saw the first of two waterfalls. (I think it was Koosah Falls.)
It was loud, of course, but I could have watched it for hours.
Speaking of well-maintained trails, I’m always tickled to find stairs in the woods. These were on the way up the river, past the first waterfall to the second (and the top of the loop).
So then we came to the second waterfall. Look at all that green! I can’t get over how nearly neon it was.
Then of course we asked someone to take our picture. Not great, but whatever.
So we climbed to the top of that waterfall and kept following the trail, but when it was time loop back, we weren’t ready. There was another path that was supposed to lead to Clear Lake (never heard of it, but it sounded promising), so we figured we’d follow that for a little bit.
It led us here. We weren’t impressed.
We were going to turn back, but another hiker came by and pointed out that the trail continued on the other side of the road. That was awfully nice of her because that’s how we found
the Lake of Shining Waters Clear Lake.
It had a cool bridge going across the river.
We walked a little and turned around pretty quickly, but when we got back to the bridge, it had been overrun by tweens from sleepaway camp. There were at least 20 of them, daring each other to jump off the bridge, their camp counselors egging them on. I got video.
After that, we headed back to the waterfalls loop to go down the other side. We found where the trolls live.
And then as we got to the top of that upper waterfall, we climbed down from the actual trail to get closer to the water and I found my new favorite spot in the whole world.
That’s where the water plunges down, that horizontal line of frothy water with trees above it (beyond it). My toes were an inch from the waterline on the bank.
I crouched down under a tree to get the water rushing over rocks inches away.
Shifting my focus upstream, look at how clear it is and then how cold it looks.
And then there was this spot, where I could sit up against a tree with the water rushing by below and the dropoff 30 feet ahead.
We stopped here for a while.
And, well, John was hot, so he tested the temperature.
We did eventually head back down the trail, and we found ALL the rainbows at the first waterfall.
This next picture is why I mentioned all that stuff about not editing and not using filters. I have done nothing to this picture to make it look like this.
It’s my favorite. Occasionally I get lucky. And that day, I was very happy to be on that trail.
We’re home and back on wifi, but I don’t have the energy to give you the details of our trip tonight. However, I will deliver pictures of the belated Mother’s Day tulips* that FILLED the market this weekend.
*I typed “tupils”. I need to remember that. Speaking of tupils, there’s a farm in Oregon that has a festival every year, but we missed it. Christina invited me to go the last weekend, but I already had plans. Sad me.
That’s Tigger, up there. Stubborn pony who’s almost a horse (he’s just under 14.2 hands). And just below here, that’s me and Tigger after my lesson on Sunday. No joke, he is licking my t-shirt. I don’t know why.
Down there is Tigger in his muddy blanket. This is from last Tuesday, I think.
This is Dobby, Tigger’s frenemy. Another pony.
And this is Willow, the first pony I rode. She does NOT like to jump, so Wendy switched me to Tigger when I got to that point. I should have gotten a picture of her in her winter coat. She looked like a goat, with a beard.
Wendy has plenty of horses (not just ponies), but I don’t know them very well.
These next few pictures are from Sunday (a beautiful day, obviously). Random pic of the farm plus some of the outdoor arena.
And here’s the indoor arena.
My last three lessons have been GREAT. I rode with someone (Robin on Casino) on Tuesday (a week ago), and even Wendy pointed out that I had a great lesson WITH someone. I jumped the biggest jump I’ve ever jumped, and I handled Tigger’s minor tantrums well.
Then I rode with someone else on Sunday (Kelly on Mac) and alone today, and even though I felt weird on Sunday (I kept holding my arms wrong and Tigger’s head felt further away than usual (like I was taller?) – I blame the allergy medicine), both lessons were good and I’ve gotten a lot more comfortable. Of course, I should expect to see big improvements if I ride three times a week, but I can’t really afford that.
Anyway, this is the biggest jump I’ve jumped so far. Wendy says I’ve jumped that high (2’3″), but this one is set up like a pyramid and is 2’6″ wide. I haven’t jumped wide before, and it was really really cool.
This is what I normally jump. Or the Xs you can see in the outdoor arena. Jumping is so cool.
And, for atmosphere, this is the view past the indoor arena on a stormy day. John says it looks like Scotland.